Pasta con la ricotta (Pasta and Ricotta Cheese)

FrankCampania, pasta, primi piatti, Puglia60 Comments

Pasta con la ricotta (Pasta and ricotta)

Pasta and ricotta make for a perfect impromptu meal or weekend dinner. The mellow flavor combination of tomato, ricotta and a bit of parmesan cheese is vaguely reminiscent of southern-style lasagna. But unlike lasagna, it’ll be done in less than 30 minutes—the time it takes to bring the water to … Read More

Il Gran Bollito Misto (Mixed Boiled Meat)

FrankEmilia-Romagna, Piemonte, secondi piatti, Winter21 Comments

Mixed Boiled Meat

We usually think of boiled meat as a by-product of making broth, a humble if comforting dish for parsimonious souls. But in northern Italy, particularly in the Piemonte and Emilia-Romagna, they’ve transformed the dish into a regal spread. Traditionally, a true Gran Bollito Misto includes seven different cuts (tagli) of beef … Read More

Quick Note: Picchiapò

Franksecondi piatti23 Comments

Picchiapò

We’re an old fashioned household in many ways. In the cooler months, making broth is a Sunday afternoon ritual in our house. And from broth comes boiled meat, an old fashioned treat that most people these days have never tasted. If it sounds to you like hospital food, think again. Italian … Read More

Carabaccia (Tuscan Onion Soup)

Frankprimi piatti, Soups, Toscana, Winter31 Comments

Carabaccia

Carabaccia is an ancient Tuscan onion soup, going back to the Renaissance. They say it was a favorite of Leonardo da Vinci—and that, as for so many other classic dishes,  the recipe was brought by Catarina de’  Medici to France, where it evolved into the soupe à l’oignon we all know and love today. You … Read More

Montebianco (Mont-blanc)

Frankdessert, Fall, Winter19 Comments

Montebianco (Mont-blanc)

Montebianco—which most English speakers know by its French name Mont-blanc even if the dish originated in Italy—is an elegant dessert often served for Christmas, but, to my mind, it is a perfect conclusion to any festive occasion in the late autumn or winter. Named after the highest peak of the Alps straddling the … Read More

Frittata di maccheroni avanzati (Leftover Pasta Frittata)

Franksecondi piatti, snack25 Comments

Leftover pasta is generally pretty bad when reheated. But there is one great way to recycle leftover pasta: as a pasta frittata. All you do is mix your leftovers with eggs and grated cheese, perhaps some minced parsley for color, and a bit of salt and pepper if it needs … Read More

A Neapolitan Christmas: Insalata di rinforzo (Cauliflower and Pickled Vegetable Salad)

Frankantipasti, Winter31 Comments

Insalata di rinforzo

This zesty cauliflower salad is a fixture on family tables in Naples during the Christmas season.  The salad is called insalata di rinforzo—’reinforcement salad’—is because it was customary in the old days to make a first batch as an antipasto on Christmas Eve and to keep on ‘reinforcing’ it with more cauliflower … Read More

A Neapolitan Christmas: Capitone fritto (Fried Eel)

Frankantipasti9 Comments

Fried Eel

It wouldn’t be Christmas Eve without fish, and capitone fritto, or fried eel is one of the most popular choices in Italy, where the tradition goes back for millennia. While eel is almost unheard of in the US outside sushi circles, there’s a good reason for its popularity: eel has a meaty … Read More